And here’s the proof: Black man loses lawsuit against exclusionary store; not deemed a discriminatory statement. But take a look at why the claim was kicked out of court:
The man who brought the suit is 41-year-old Steve MacGowan. On September 4, 2004, MacGowan and another black friend were looking at eyeglasses in the window of an optician in Osaka. The store owner came to the front, said “Get out! We don’t like black people here!” and kept the two out of the store. The suit was filed in October of that year.
The decision, following MacGowan’s allegations of violations of constitutional equal protection provisions, focused upon the existence of a discriminatory statement. The judgment: “The plaintiff’s ability in Japanese creates a substantial problem. We cannot overlook the chance that the statement made on that day was almost completely miscomprehended.”
So the bottom line is, unless your Japanese is absolutely perfect, you’d better have some native witnesses around if you want to win in court. Or better yet, carry a tape recorder.
(Thanks to Debito for the tip.)